"Is it legal to travel to Cuba?" We get this question a lot. The answer is, yes. Canadians, Latin Americans, Europeans, and yes, Americans, travel to the island every year. As world tourism continues to recover post-pandemic, we're excited to give our guests access to a Cuba you definitely will not see on your own.
From the moment you book your stay with us, our local personal concierge can help you with visa questions, plan your arrival, and book an entirely personal itinerary so you experience the Cuba we do.
Here are some common questions and helpful tips for planning your visit to the most musical neighborhood in Havana: Cayo Hueso.
IS IT LEGAL FOR AMERICANS TO TRAVEL TO CUBA?
YES. It is legal for Americans to travel to Cuba. It's super easy as long as you have your tourist visa and reason for travel. Since the Obama administration, the relationship between Cuba and the USA has relaxed, allowing for commercial airlines to travel to Cuba. Thankfully, you can book directly from several USA cities including NYC, Houston and Miami. Airlines including United, American, Alaska, Delta, Frontier, Southwest, and Spirit Airlines all have commercial flights from the USA.
DO I NEED A VISA TO TRAVEL TO CUBA?
YES. All Americans and visitors need a tourist visa to enter Cuba. You can purchase the visa in advance through our service provider in the states. Or you can purchase it the same day you check in for your flight at the airport. All commercial airlines have a point of purchase. When asked for the purpose of your trip, select 'Support of the Cuban people'. This complies with US regulations, meaning your activities are supporting independent Cuban initiatives or private sector business. We provide itineraries that support this category. Other categories may apply to you including religious or educational reasons.
Once you book your stay with us, our local personal concierge team can help you with any visa questions.
CAN I USE CREDIT OR DEBIT CARDS?
As per US embargo regulations, any credit cards issued by American banks don't work in Cuba. So you'll want to bring cash in one of the following currencies: Canadian Dollar, Euros, or USA Dollars (yes, dollars are accepted). If you purchase goods and services in these currencies, you will likely receive Cuban pesos in return at the current exchange rate. You can also exchange currencies at Airport customs when you arrive.
WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOU LAND AT JOSÉ MARTÍ INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT IN HAVANA
- COVID Process — As of August 2023, all arrivals fill out a short health questionnaire.
- Immigration — Show your passport and visa to an immigration officer who will stamp your visa. IMPORTANT! Hold on to your visa. You must return it at your departure.
- VIP Arrival — If you choose to purchase VIP arrival through our provider, a VIP team member will take you to the VIP lounge. You can connect to WIFI, sip on a cuba libre and relax while they collect your luggage for you.
- Customs — Same as most places, declare any items and at this point you can exchange cash if needed.
HOW DOES AIRPORT TRANSPORTATION WORK?
Expect approximately a one hour drive from the airport to Centro Havana. Once you've booked with us, our personal concierge can book your transfer in either a standard car or a 1950's almendra for a classic experience.
WHAT'S THE CONNECTIVITY SITUATION?
In general wifi speeds in Cuba have some limitations. So we ask for your patience and come prepared to enjoy a different pace of connectivity. Tribe Caribe offers wifi in your room and throughout the hotel. You'll receive a voucher to connect at check-in. This service is included in your room rate.
HOW SAFE IS IT?
Cuba is considered one of the safest places in the Caribbean. We're located in Cayo Hueso in Centro Havana. The neighborhood is as safe as any other in Havana. Plus, we have 24/7 security at the hotel to give you that extra peace of mind.
WHAT NEIGHBORHOOD IS THE HOTEL LOCATED IN?
The hotel is located in the neighborhood of Cayo Hueso in Centro Habana. From this central location, we're just a few minutes on foot from Vedado, a few minutes by car from Old Habana and only four blocks away from the Malecón oceanfront. Artists past and present gathered in Cayo Hueso to connect, to play rumba, to express and enjoy themselves. It's the perfect location if you want to explore our unique access to Cuba's musical and cultural heritage. Check out our historical map highlighting the precious cultural heritage of the neighborhood and close by attractions.
DO YOU OFFER TOURS & EXPERIENCES?
YES! We are passionate about sharing our unique access to Havana so you can experience Cuba the way we do. We create personalized itineraries based on your unique interests and travel style. We provide itineraries that support independent Cuban initiatives or private sector business. Start by taking a look at our 'Personalized Experiences' page to see what we offer. When you confirm your booking, we'll reach out to plan your stay and experience.
A LITTLE BACKGROUND ON BUILDING BRIDGES WITH OUR HOSPITALITY & CREATIVE COMMUNITY
Socially responsible travel helps sustain the fragile ecosystem in Cuba. Americans have been able to travel to Cuba since 2015. That's when relations relaxed under the Obama Administration. Some re-balancing of restrictions have returned under the current administration. Most notably, small business training and workshops were recently provided through the U.S. embassy in Havana for growing entrepreneurs in Cuba. It's only been a short period of time since private small business enterprise was legalized. This has had an impact on restaurants, hotels and hospitality in general. It's opened up many opportunities for young, innovative, entrepreneurs who want to stay in their beloved country and express their passion and creativity.
Tribe Caribe supports a collective of entrepreneurs and serves as stewards of the hotel. We support the growing learning curve of running a small business, we champion excellence in guest services and believe in an experience oriented mentality. Tribe Caribe Cayo Hueso is more than a hotel, it’s a cultural destination that supports the preservation of vital cultural heritage and countless artistic contributions including rumba, Afro-Cuban jazz, the visual arts and much, much more.
STILL HAVE QUESTIONS?
¡Nos vemos en Cayo Hueso!